Special diets work by reducing the mineral building blocks or urinary stones in the urine. These diets affect the urine pH and increase urination to help flush the urinary tract.
To completely dissolve the stones takes 4-16 weeks, depending on the size and number of stones present. During this time it is very important that your dog consume nothing besides the prescribed medications and the prescribed diet. Otherwise, the diet will not work properly and your pet will be plagued with this condition longer than necessary. Follow your veterinarian's directions when feeding the prescribed food, whether for treatment or prevention. Although these foods may not look like your typical dog food, most dogs readily eat these diets and find them palatable. If your dog is one of the few that doesn't readily accept a new diet after two days, you may want to try the following:
* Warm the canned diet to, but not above, body temperature
* Hand feed the new diet for the first few days
* Mix the dry diet with a little warm water and wait 10 minutes before serving
* Over a 7-10 day period, mix the diet with your pet's former food, gradually increasing the proportions until only the new diet is being fed
Feed only the prescribed diet!
Do not feed meat, liver or other animal tissue, vitamin/mineral supplements, calcium supplements, breakfast cereals or vegetables.
Be patient, but firm with your dog. This is important. The success or failure of treatment depends to a large degree on strict adherence to the new diet.
If a bacterial infection is present you may need to keep your dog on antibiotics during this entire period.